Wellness Lifestyle Real Estate is a $134 billion industry, growing by 6.4 per cent annually since 2015 and projected to grow into $198 billion in 2022. This is about 1.5% of the total annual global construction market and about half the size of the global green building industry. Australia has been a trailblazer for this industry with current market size being $9.5 billion.
In 2017, there were 740 wellness-focused projects in the pipeline across 34 countries and with the drastic effects of COVID-19, we expect this number to go higher in the next few years. Currently, sales price premiums for wellness lifestyle real estate developments are averaging 10-25% and this can even go up to a staggering 55%.
Looking to the future, our internal research found key emerging wellness concepts that will drive the future development of Wellness Lifestyle Real Estate and will push the design of healthy living environments to the next level:
1. Transitioning from green to regenerative and planet-conscious living
With a growing number of consumers becoming increasingly cautious of their carbon footprint and the symbiotic link between environment and human health, the demand for developments where planet-friendly principles are at the forefront of the construction process from materials used and design of structures to waste disposal systems and engagement of residents will only continue to accelerate.
The epitome of this concept is ReGen Villages, which is a new visionary model for the development of off-grid, integrated and resilient eco-villages that can power and feed self-reliant families. It appeals to consumers who are keen to embrace a regenerative lifestyle, which may mean generating the energy and water they need and growing the food that they eat.
2. Capitalising on technology to create smart-healthy homes
Self-driving cars, sensors, augmented reality, and artificial intelligence are just some of today’s technological advancements that can radically transform our living environments. Astute property developers are already capitalising on these technologies to enhance residents’ health and wellbeing.
One of the projects based on this concept is the Connected City in Florida, the first and only community with up to an incredible 1 Gigabit of speed. Set to become the best place for a true 21st-century live-play-work model, this will have roads ready for driverless vehicles, smart homes, smart businesses, and the most advanced schools and libraries.
3. Blurring the lines between life and work even further
Did you know that the number of Australian remote workers doubled during COVID-19? From 21 per cent of Australian remote workers pre-pandemic, it increased to 41 per cent in February this year.
With the popularity of freelancing and the dramatic rise of remote working, GWI predicted that more developments that integrate co-living, coworking, and wellness facilities will grow in the coming years. A project in progress in Dallas, Texas is a pioneer of this concept, which is set to feature up to 400 apartments, 50,000 square feet of coworking space and an athletic club with a spa, café, and kids club.
4. Using thermal/mineral bathing as a wellness component
The global wellness industry was already valued at $4.2 trillion in 2017 and with the growing interest in natural wellness therapies and historic wellness traditions, GWI forecasted future growth for residences built within mixed-use developments that integrate thermal/mineral springs facilities and other wellness services and will target a diverse range of buyers.
5. Reviving multigenerational and diverse neighbourhoods
Over the past decades, we’ve seen increased segregation of neighbourhoods according to a variety of factors like income and life stage. For example, young people are in cities whilst families are in suburbs. This was brought about by the interplay between policy, planning, economic, and social convention.
Our research found that many baby boomers find this boring, expressing that they want to live in a diversified neighbourhood. By 2025, most baby boomers have already retired and by 2036, Australia is forecasted to have nearly 50% more people older than 55, increasing the mature population from 6.4 million in 2016 to 9.4 million. This only tells you to look deeper into this trend and incorporate it in your upcoming projects.
With the growing number of conscious consumers realising their mortality and the symbiotic relationship between health and environment, Wellness Lifestyle Real Estate is truly the way of the future, and it should be. Every property developer needs to start paying attention to the latest demands in this niche and recalibrate their visions for a profitable future.